Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Jyotiraditya Scindia's campaign sees wife, son join in to highlight family's 'public service'

The Scindia family borough has retained the Guna seta on 14 occasions out of 18 elections held for this LS seat, regardless of party affiliations.
Last Updated : 30 April 2024, 13:43 IST
Last Updated : 30 April 2024, 13:43 IST

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Bhopal: Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia is BJP's candidate from Guna-Shivpuri constituency. The election for this seat is scheduled to take place in the 3rd phase along with 8 more Lok Sabha seats in Madhya Pradesh on April 7. Other seats include Morena, Bhind, Gwalior, Rajgarh, Sagar, Vidisha, Bhopal and Betul.

The Guna seat is considered as the pocket borough of the erstwhile Scindia rulers, with successive leaders from the royal family, starting from 'Rajmata' Vijayaraje Scindia to Madhavrao Scindia and now, Jyotiraditya Scindia.

Jyotiraditya Scindia will be contesting the Lok Sabha elections on a BJP ticket for the first time after his exit from Congress in 2020. His exit from Congress also resulted in the fall of the Kamal Nath-led Congress government in MP without completing his 5-year term.

Scindia was not only 'crowned' Union Minister of Civil Aviation and Steel but his supporters (more than 19 MLAs) were also made ministers in the state cabinet under former CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

The Scindia family borough has retained the Guna seat on 14 occasions out of 18 elections held for this LS seat, regardless of party affiliations.

Vijayaraje Scindia contested and won her first election in 1957 on a Congress ticket but resigned and fought as an independent candidate in 1967 and won.

She contested and won the Guna seat on BJP ticket between 1989 and 1998. Her son and veteran congress leader Madhavrao Scindia was nine-term Lok Sabha MP from the Guna/Gwalior seats. He (Madavrao Scindia) contested his first election on a Bhartiya Jana Sangh ticket from Guna constituency in 1971.

In 1980, he switched allegiance to INC and won from the Guna seat (his third consecutive term). Madhavrao Scindia had been nominated as the Congress party candidate from Gwalior in the last-minute manoeuvre to defeat BJP’s Atal Behari Vajpayee, and he won with a convincing margin.

But after his untimely demise in a plane crash, his son Jyotiraditya Scindia was pushed to continue his family's political legacy. He was elected as the Congress MP in the by-election from Guna seat in 2002.

Jyotiraditya Scindia, after switching his allegiance to BJP, is asking his loyal electorate to choose the lotus symbol in the Lok Sabha Elections 2024.

The Parliamentary constituency consists of 8 assembly segments in 3 districts — Guna, Shivpuri and Ashoknagar.

Scindia is in the fray against Congress nominee Rao Yadvendra Singh who had lost the 2023 assembly election from Mugaowli seat (Ashoknagar district). The upbeat BJP which won 6 of the 8 assembly seats in 2023 election is leaving no stone unturned to script another win, though Congress is not giving up entirely yet.

Despite the prevailing heat wave conditions, Scindia’s wife Priyadarshini Raje Scindia and son Mahanaryaman are also on the campaign trail.

Priyadarshini Raje Scindia is not a newcomer and has been walking shoulder to shoulder with her husband in earlier electoral battles too. She tends to interact with people at their level, especially women voters in 'Nukkad Sabhas', listening to their grievances, patiently.

She uses the opportunity to appeal to people to vote for Scindia as someone who has a track record of working tirelessly for the development and welfare of the region.

She often refers to herself the the people's 'beti' or 'bahu' who has come to meet them and listen to their problems. At a recent public meeting, she said, "My husband’s heart beats for you people (people of the region). Even whilst he was not your MP, Scindia continued to work. He (Scindia) missed you a lot and now he is back again only to remain with you forever."

Priyadarshini’s campaign interventions on behalf of her husband has seen her do a spot of 'Vote BJP' wall paintings, telling voters 'Kamal Ke Nishan Wala Button Dabana Hai' (Press the Lotus symbol button) to interacting with local traders and tasting chaat.

She has also played carrom with a village boy, enjoyed a paan break in a village gumti, and, in a myriad other ways, added color to the Scindia campaign.

While mom Priyadarshini is a pro at connecting with the people thronging to see her, son Mahanaryaman is sweating it out too. Paying no mind to the extreme weather, he has been actively campaigning for his father.

He is giving media interviews, interacting with youngsters, sportsmen, and occasionally, large gatherings too. He was quoted as saying that he was not interested in politics himself and only campaigning for his father because it was 'election season'.

Jyotiraditya Scindia while speaking with DH, said he is in politics for the purposes of public service. Congress has become irrelevant and bankrupt on both ideology and leadership, according to him.

He was feeling humiliated and suffocated in the Grand Old Party and has thus decided to switch allegiance to BJP. He believes that under the leadership of Narendra Modi, Amit Shah, JP Nadda and his own state's CM, Mohan Yadav, the welfare and development centric schemes will get a boost. "'Modi ki guarantee' not only ensures good governance and zero tolerance against corruption but will take the country to the next level and make it the world leader," Scindia said.

Published 30 April 2024, 13:43 IST

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